Facebook is not your friend when it comes to social media marketing (but Tumblr and Google+ are).
I’ve worked with social media for clients and for my own freelance copywriting work. I’m going to explain why I’ve given up on Facebook and embraced Tumblr and Google+ with open arms – and infinitely better results.
In terms of reach, Facebook can be an uphill battle with squelchy swamps (and you’re walking up the hill in wooden shoes). I’ve previously worked on social media campaigns targeting kids; it was already tricky, seeing as our audience shouldn’t legally have Facebook accounts, but some of our competitors had over a million likes. Our page had roughly 9000 likes which seemed great, but our highest post reach was about 150, with posts averaging 2-6 likes and rarely commented on.
I thought about my own personal Facebook account and checked all the pages I followed. I couldn’t remember seeing a single post from any of them in the never-ending onslaught of Buzzfeed articles and videos of puppies. From what I’ve seen (and it’s been widely discussed) Facebook isn’t showing users content from pages they’ve liked – they have to manually select a notification to see the posts. Useless.
Facebook introduced hashtags and I don’t think anyone knows why. I actually just Googled it to make this post more informative and couldn’t find out why. My sidebar on Facebook is always full of watered-down news from weird sites, celebrity updates which I don’t care about and (who would’ve thought?) Buzzfeed. When did you last browse hashtagged content on Facebook? About the same time you had kale and green tea instead of pizza? Me too. Time to move on.
Call me Tumblrina
Tumblr is one of my favourite platforms for social media marketing. I’m already using it for my freelancing work and I’ve gained two followers in the past week. Surely I should be about as worried as a chunk of earwax in sight of a Q-Tip? Incorrect!
Search and you will find
One of Tumblr’s biggest strengths is the searchable content. That hilarious meme you lovingly crafted six months ago? It’ll keep resurfacing in user’s searches. Again from my experience with the kids’ website social media, many posts sunk into the mulch for a while but, most importantly, they fought back like determined dandelions on steroids. They grew, they got reblogs and notes, I felt better.
Reach (Part II)
Your Tumblr followers see everything you post. Nothing is weighted based on user interest; like Instagram, every post appears. Every cat picture has the potential to reach all of your followers. Tumblr 2 Facebook 0.
On a Moz blog, some clever Mozzers pointed out that you can in fact get backlinks from Tumblr reblogs. Post an article with an eye-catching image and caption the image with a URL of your choice (preferably the article); when people reblog, they’re essentially posting the link to their own Tumblr – a backlink. Not a great one, but a dofollow link none the less. Great social media signals for your site and you didn’t even break a sweat.
Tumblr is also very friendly and open to people joining the community, but it doesn’t take the effort that (for example) Reddit requires for marketers. Reddit’s an extreme case, but to make your marketing valid amongst Redditors you need to comment, upvote and post non-marketing stuff A LOT. Jump on Tumblr, reblog and note the things you like, voila. You’re involved. Other users will reward you for it with follows, comments and even handy tips if they think you’re struggling (yes, that actually happened to me).
Google plus points
In all honesty, for personal use I hate Google+ with a fiery passion. But, for marketing and outreach, it can be amazing. With Google+ communities, you can easily share relevant posts with people who care about it (and they get to see it, unlike SOME social media sites we could mention) and they’re usually pretty responsive. Good content is rewarded with +1s and over time you’ll gain followers (be in people’s circles, whatever).
And if you’re not already signing up to Tumblr and Google+…
Here come the stats.
Tumblr has an estimated 217 million blogs, with 30-50 million active users. Snotty marketing blogs are pointing out that’s fewer than expected; still quite a lot though, isn’t it?
Google+ has 500 million registered users. Wowza. The best time to post is between 11am and 2pm, which means no more annoying scheduling and missing out on trending topics if you’re a nine to fiver.
So Google+ and Tumblr get my vote. If you’re posting really great content on Facebook, please stop and start throwing it around Tumblr and Google+. Admittedly, Tumblr’s user base does include angsty teenagers who get lairy about gender issues, feminism and Big Hero 6 gifs, but Google+ is a strong option for any marketer. When I managed the social media for an industrial suppliers, I regularly posted on construction and PPE communities; they always responded well.
If you want any more info about Tumblr and Google+, fancy expanding your social media campaign to Tumblrville or GoogleCity or simply need to rant about how angry Facebook makes you, I’d love to hear from you: firstname.lastname@example.org
Proviso so I don’t get an internet bashing:
I’m not a social media expert. All the above are my opinions, but, in my opinion, my opinions are usually spot on. This article is only referring to social media for marketing; Facebook remains the go-to for stalking ex-partners and inspiring acute jealousy of your friends in Australia/Thailand. Finally, all this information will vary in relevance depending on your target audience.